Friday, May 11, 2012
Recently I watched the 2011 movie Tree of Life, which received the Palme d’Or award, the highest prize given at the Cannes Film Festival. It is described as “an American film with experimental elements.” I admit it’s a movie I couldn’t really find my way through. Or I am overwhelmed by possibilities—still trying to decide. Like reading poetry where you catch glimpses but are not sure of your interpretation. Or you can relate to some poets but not others, regardless of the quality.
The story is shared in a non-linear narrative, mostly in fragments and juxtaposed with exquisite imagery. Since my own creative process often falls under non-linear definition it’s interesting that I’m struggling. I guess I prefer a polished wrapped up movie sequence. Yet a creative metaphor does exactly what the movie has accomplished—widened out perception in order to see thing with a new perspective.
And the visual metaphors are astonishing. The ones that impacted me were the repeating birth metaphors delivered in such a wide array. Birth of a child, birth of a day—somewhat familiar yet paired with birth of a volcano, birth of a storm, seeds beginning. A silent, brief wick flicker of faith, a momentary pulse that fades in an instant and yet still returns at every opportunity for life. It hesitates, whispers encouragement, waits for an invitation and then disappears.
The flicker didn’t call attention to itself or stay long. Yet it repeated with gentle nudges never letting go.
"Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth ... when the morning stars sang together?" God asks in Job 38:4,7. Tree of Life opens with this quote. A question that theologians and scholars have tried to unravel for centuries.
And perhaps that’s where the metaphors connect with hope. As long as there is a search, questions, possibilities and a yearning for relationship, life grows with perception spiritually.
What movie have you watched where the images stayed in your thoughts long afterwards?
Share: What was the key repeating echo for you?
Posted by Marcy Weydemuller at 7:30 AM